AnandTech Storage Bench - The Destroyer

The Destroyer is an extremely long test replicating the access patterns of very IO-intensive desktop usage. A detailed breakdown can be found in this article. Like real-world usage, the drives do get the occasional break that allows for some background garbage collection and flushing caches, but those idle times are limited to 25ms so that it doesn't take all week to run the test. These AnandTech Storage Bench (ATSB) tests do not involve running the actual applications that generated the workloads, so the scores are relatively insensitive to changes in CPU performance and RAM from our new testbed, but the jump to a newer version of Windows and the newer storage drivers can have an impact.

We quantify performance on this test by reporting the drive's average data throughput, the average latency of the I/O operations, and the total energy used by the drive over the course of the test.

ATSB - The Destroyer (Data Rate)

The average data rate from the new WD Black on The Destroyer is almost as fast as Samsung's TLC-based 960 EVO and their newer PM981 OEM drive. Where the original WD Black NVMe SSD was clearly a low-end NVMe drive and no faster than SATA SSDs on this test, the new WD Black is competitive at the high end.

ATSB - The Destroyer (Average Latency)ATSB - The Destroyer (99th Percentile Latency)

The average latencies from the WD Black are competitive with Samsung's TLC drives, and the 99th percentile latencies are the fastest we've seen from any flash-based SSD for this capacity class.

ATSB - The Destroyer (Average Read Latency)ATSB - The Destroyer (Average Write Latency)

The average read latencies from the WD Black on The Destroyer are as good as any flash-based SSD we've tested. Average write latencies are great but Samsung's top drives are still clearly faster.

ATSB - The Destroyer (99th Percentile Read Latency)ATSB - The Destroyer (99th Percentile Write Latency)

The WD Black has the best 99th percentile read latency scores aside from Intel's Optane SSD 900P, but the 99th percentile write latency scores are only in the second tier of drives.

ATSB - The Destroyer (Power)

The load power consumption of the new WD Black is a huge improvement over the previous SSD to bear this name. The new model uses less than half as much energy over the course of The Destroyer, putting it in first place slightly ahead of the Toshiba XG5.

The Western Digital NVMe Architecture - NAND & Controller AnandTech Storage Bench - Heavy
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  • boeush - Thursday, April 5, 2018 - link

    See the respective Destroyer, Heavy, and Light ATSB results - and match up your version of "real world" to the respective test scenario... Reply
  • The_Assimilator - Thursday, April 5, 2018 - link

    A new SSD controller that doesn't perform like shit is excellent news for a market that's seen Samsung ruling the roost for far too long. Hopefully this will be the beginning of price drops for NVMe drives that don't suck, and the beginning of the end of NVMe drives that are just SATA devices in an M.2 form factor. Reply
  • darckhart - Thursday, April 5, 2018 - link

    any TCG OPAL encryption in WD or Sandisk? Reply
  • npz - Thursday, April 5, 2018 - link

    No, only Intel provides OPAL and eDrive (ieee 1667) for their NVME drives so far. Samsung claims they didn't provide it because the standard for ieee 1667 does not cover nvme and only SATA so far (but it's currently being updated) and I assume the same for WD/Sandisk consumer line. I don't know if WD/Sandisk's nvme enterprise models have it.

    While OPAL itself is not a problem for nvme and is already present on Samsung (but I didn't see anything on WD) it is only good for secondary drives. For boot drives you also need eDrive / ieee 1667. What Samsung doesn't tell you and what Intel does, is that you cann tunnel SATA commands through NVME which can be used as a workaround
    Reply
  • tommo1982 - Thursday, April 5, 2018 - link

    It's interesting how Optane is not so much better in Destroyer/Heavy/Light tests. I expected it to lead in most of them, but found Samsung and WD's drives to match or beat it. With the recent hype around X-Point I was hoping for it to be a considerable improvement over NAND. It seems Intel doesn't deliver. Not for the average user at least. Reply
  • zodiacfml - Friday, April 6, 2018 - link

    Controller and lack of parallelism. The memory chip is insane. Intel needs to improve their volumes so that they can produce higher capacity drives, giving more capacity and performance at the same costs today.
    This is probably the reason why Intel seems aggressive now with Optane, bundling and branding it with the new Coffee Lake chips.
    Reply
  • CheapSushi - Tuesday, April 17, 2018 - link

    Plus still waiting on x4 PCIe laned M.2 Optanes. Reply
  • CheapSushi - Tuesday, April 17, 2018 - link

    Isn't it because those other drives have a lot more RAM and RAM still beats phase change? Optane is still better is many other regards but choices of course depend on more variables. Reply
  • tamalero - Thursday, April 5, 2018 - link

    I dont get it, how they claim its competition when WD's performance is absolutely abysmal compared to the EVOs. Reply
  • tamalero - Thursday, April 5, 2018 - link

    Disregard my comment. Turns out I was checking the blue instead of the orange bars.

    What a monstrous difference in performance compared to the prior models!
    Reply

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